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Best post-lockout Ranger: Round 1, Brad Richards (7) vs. Martin Biron (10)

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As the offseason wears on, us and Matt Josephs of Blue Line Station (Twitter: 11Matt_Josephs8) will be running a tournament for the Best Ranger since the 2005 lockout. Yesterday we saw #6 Petr Prucha beat #11 Paul Mara. Today’s matchup is #7 Brad Richards vs. #10 Martin Biron.

Brad Richards (acquired – 2011 unrestricted free agent)

Richards came on board with the Rangers in July of 2011, signing a nine-year back-loaded deal that many assumed would not be worth it towards the end of the contract. His first year wasn’t bad, putting up 25 goals and 66 points, but his second season was an unmitigated disaster. Clearly unprepared for the lockout shortened season, Richards looked slow, sluggish, and lost. That said, his point totals weren’t exactly terrible, putting up 11-23-34 in 44 games. In his first two seasons, Richards has a line of 36-64-100 in 128 games. That’s not exactly horrible.

Richards was the subject of many buyout rumors this summer, but the Rangers decided to keep him around. Even in this market, a 65 point center is tough to find for $6.6 million.

Martin Biron (acquired – 2010 unrestricted free agent)

When the Rangers signed Biron, many regarded it as a move that would go undervalued and under appreciated. Signed to take the load off Henrik Lundqvist, Biron plays about 20 games per season in a full year, although the number of starts changes based on the seasonal situation. For example, he only started six games last season while the Rangers were fighting for a playoff spot. In his three seasons, Biron has been a steady backup, playing to about a 2.30 GAA and a .910 SV%.

So who do you think is the better Ranger, Richards or Biron? Vote thumbs up for the higher seed (Richards), or thumbs down for the lower seed (Biron). Voting ends at midnight tonight.

13 Responses to “Best post-lockout Ranger: Round 1, Brad Richards (7) vs. Martin Biron (10)”

  1. voidoid says:

    Relative to their roles I think Biron has been the better player. Richards was brought in to be the top-line center, and he certainly isn’t that; Biron has a 22-14 record as a backup with solid numbers.

    What I really like about Biron is how he studies opposing goalies and then coaches his teammates during shootouts. He’s like a third assistant coach on the bench.

    • Evan M says:

      There were people who credited the mentoring by Richards for the breakthrough DZ had last full season, and for the advancement of Stepan’s development. Because of the cap situation, it’s easy to forget how valuable BR can be.

  2. Randy says:

    I think Biron is possibly the best backup goalie you could ask for in the league. He is a great locker room guy, and can step in and get wins…which must be hard to do playing behind the best goalie in the world.

    Richards gets my vote though. He actually had a good season 2 years ago, with some big goals (winter classic, phoenix, game 5 GTG vs caps). Those three goals alone are more valuable than anything Biron has done. I really hope Richie can back bounce this year, I wanna like the guy.

  3. Tommy T says:

    Biron

    just for his personality and interviews alone LOL

  4. Dave says:

    Another tie. This one goes to 10:30am for overtime.

  5. Dave says:

    Seriously? Still tied. Voting extended to 11am.

  6. Hatrick Swayze says:

    Richards

    And ONLY because of how he contributed to us FINALLY knocking Washington out of the playoffs last year. It was the retribution I needed for being tortured all throughout my college years as the Caps used to DOMINATE us in the post season. I’m so happy we’ve been able to return the favor the past 2 years.

    And it all started with Richards heroics with 6.5 (i think) seconds left in game 4 (i think). And he also put us on the board 6 or so minutes into the game in Game 7 with a burner from the top of the circle over Holtby’s far pad.

    I vote Richards because I despise the gosh darn Capitals.

  7. Dave says:

    Richards wins.

  8. Evan M says:

    I’m looking forward to seeing what BR does this season. I think he’s going to surprise many and put up a very solid year. He’ll continue to be a great mentor, on and off the ice, and his charity work shouldn’t go unnoticed.